APPROVED

 

TOWN OF PELHAM

PLANNING BOARD MEETING

June 3, 2002   

 

The Chairman, Victor Danevich called the meeting to order at 7:45 pm.

 

The Secretary, Bill Scanzani, called the roll:

 

PRESENT:

Victor Danevich, Paddy Culbert, Bill Scanzani, Peter McNamara, Henry DeLuca, Gael Ouellette, Alternate Robin Bousa, Alternate Raymond Brunelle, Alternate Bob Yarmo, Selectmen’s Representative Hal Lynde, Community Development Director Dave Brouillet, Interim Planning Director Clay Mitchell

 

ABSENT:

 

None.

 

Mr. Danevich welcomed the Planning Board’s newest members, Mr. Brouillet and Mr. Yarmo. 

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

Map 3 Lot 166-23 - Cady, Alan - Overlook Drive - Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision for Planning Director’s Report on Completeness - No testimony will be taken at this time

 

Mr. Scanzani read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons who did not have their name read, or who had a problem with notification.  The file did not contain any written correspondence from abutters.  There was one abutter notification returned from the post office, it was addressed to the State of New Hampshire Division of Forestry, Concord. 

 

Mr. Mitchell said the Board had previously reviewed the plan and had asked if the driveway would be removed from the lot, which the applicant said they would.  He said the applicant had since come back and requested that the driveway remain.  He informed the applicant they would need to come before the Board because the change was significant.  Mr. Mitchell said that the application was complete and he recommended that it be accepted for consideration and scheduled for hearing. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/McNamara) To accept the plan for consideration.

 

VOTE:

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.  

 

Mr. Danevich noted that the plan was date specified for July 1, 2002. 

 

Map 6 Lot 115 - Hammar, Alrick - Hammar & Sons, Inc. - Site Plan Review for Change of Use

 

Mr. Scanzani read the list of abutters aloud. There were no persons who did not have their name read, or who had a problem with notification.  The file did not contain any written correspondence from abutters.  There was one abutter notification returned from the post office, it was addressed to Laurie Lane Realty Trust.

 

Mr. Mitchell said the site and building were existing and had two distinct, separate uses.  He suggested to the applicant that he present a limited site plan for the Board to review and ensure that there was enough parking.  He said the Board could either accept the limited information and request a site plan for any further changes, or the Board could ask for more information to be provided.  Mr. Mitchell noted that there would not be any new development.  He believed that the changes were primarily all inside the building and that there was already a separate restroom and the septic was already designed to deal with expansion.  Mr. Mitchell recommended that the plan be accepted for consideration

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Scanzani) To accept the plan for consideration.

 

VOTE:

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.  

 

Mr. Alrick Hammar presented his plan to the Board.  He said that the building was existing and the septic system was designed for 500-gallons per day, and the well had been tested at 40 gallons per minute.  He informed that there were currently 49 parking spaces and could add spots if they hot topped other areas of the property.  He said Hammar & Sons had a total of thirteen employees.  Mr. Hammar noted that the building was originally built in 1974.  He researched the original Board minutes to see if they reflected the intention for future subdivision/rental space, but the minutes did not elaborate.  Mr. Hammar believed his father planned the building so that it could be easily subdivided.  He explained the building’s construction, and how it could easily be renovated to handle additional businesses.  He asked permission to have the building listed with the Town as a multi-use building, for uses other than just Hammar & Sons Sign Company and Hammar & Sons Art Center.

 

Mr. Danevich asked what type of business was anticipated to go into the space.  Mr. Hammar said they would try to get dry goods and clean businesses so the septic system would not need to be expanded.  He said they would search for small ‘mom & pop’ type businesses with two or three employees. 

 

Mr. Danevich asked if there were any anticipated requests for additional parking, lighting, operational hour changes, or hazardous materials on-site.  Mr. Hammar said he reviewed the state’s requirements and believed they had a way to go before they needed to worry about additional expansions.  He said he would like the building listed as multi-use.

 

Mr. Scanzani had no objection to listing a building as multi-functional because each change-of-use would have to come before the Board for site review.  He wanted to know how much of the building was currently available for the change-of-use.  Mr. Hammar said they were only interested in a portion, and wanted to be the same as other plazas in the area.  He wanted to have a quick start for rentals.  He wanted to do the right thing, and was hoping that he wouldn’t have to come before the Board for every tenant.  

 

Mr. Culbert asked how much of the ten acres was usable and not wet.  Mr. Hammar said a portion was wet, but believed at least half of the property could be utilized.  Mr. Culbert said that other plazas in Town came before the Board with full site plans.  Mr. Hammar said that the minutes from 1974 did not elaborate if his father discussed future subdivision/rental space.  Mr. Culbert wanted to know how the parking space size was developed.  Mr. Hammar said that since they had the building, there had been two additions.  He said that each time an addition was made, plans were brought before the Board.  Mr. Culbert noted that different businesses had different parking needs.  Mr. Hammar said that he reviewed the regulations, but because they didn’t know what businesses would come in, he couldn’t answer what the parking needs would be.  Mr. Culbert said that traffic flow should also be considered.  Mr. Danevich discussed two buildings that had previously come before the Board due to significant changes.  Mr. Scanzani said the only plan in the file was from 1986 and noted that the Board would need the plan updated and recorded.  He said the Fire Chief should also review the plan.  Mr. Hammar noted that Hammar & Sons was not going out of business. 

 

Mr. Mitchell understood that the art gallery was going to be extinguished and a new business would be put in its place.  He said that there were currently three uses, and if one use were replaced with the most demanding parking requirement, there would be enough parking spaces.  He believed if a use was to be added, then the Board would need a full site plan.  He didn’t think the Board would require a full site plan at this time since Mr. Hammar was only requesting a change in use. 

 

Mr. Danevich confirmed that the footprint would not be changed.  Mr. Mitchell said that there was no construction going on outside the existing building.  He said there was no indication from the previous Board minutes of what they were doing. 

 

Mr. Culbert, as an example asked if there were currently nine uses in the building, if they would request nine different uses.  Mr. Hammar said that the amount of space Hammar & Sons required was not the same as in previous years.  He said they were only trying to fill the voids in the building.  He said they would like the opportunity to rent a small amount of space within the building.  He said if they went beyond the four uses, they would come back before the Board with a revised plan and show more details. 

 

Mr. DeLuca asked if changes needed to be made for handicap access.  Mr. Danevich said the building would need to be ADA compliant.  Mr. Hammar said that he had spoken with the Fire Chief and they would be adding a fire alarm system and would address any other issues.  He said that each business would need to comply with Town and state requirements. 


Mr. Culbert wanted to know where the chemicals would go if a dry cleaner rented space.  Mr. Hammar said he reviewed two other dry cleaners within plazas and found out that the companies were licensed and governed by the state.  He said that there was only one chemical used in the dry cleaning machine that would need to be taken out and placed into a special container.  He researched how it was regulated and said that they would receive copies of the paperwork to ensure that the dry cleaner was not flushing things down a drain.  Mr. Culbert was concerned about the wetlands and wanted to ensure that no chemicals or spot remover would be flushed into the septic system.  Mr. Hammar said that nothing would be added to the septic. 

 

There was no public input. 

 

Mr. Danevich said that the Board had requested updated site plans for any commercial business.  He also believed the Fire Chief should review and provide written comment.  Mr. Hammar had a letter from the Fire Chief that Mr. Danevich reviewed.  The letter mainly addressed design guidelines inside the building.  Mr. Danevich said that he would need the one-page memo from the Fire Chief that showed concurrence with the plan.  Mr. Hammar said that the Fire Chief wanted to review and address everyone on an individual basis. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked if the plan needed to be reviewed by the Board of Adjustment.  Mr. Danevich said that site plan change-of-use fell under the Planning Board’s jurisdiction.  Mr. Culbert was unclear how many uses the building was approved for.  Mr. Mitchell said that the past meeting minutes did not contain the number of uses permitted.  Mr. Scanzani said that per the 1986 plan, the uses were a retail store and manufacturing.  He said that the plan did not show the useable land and should also be updated for review by the Fire Chief.  Mr. Hammar said that the Fire Chief and his assistant reviewed the site and said that they would review each company as a separate entity.  He said the Fire Chief wanted to review each as an individual basis depending on the type of business.  Mr. Hammar once again asked for permission to make the building listed as multi-use.  He said they could then move forward with advertising available space and would at that point be required to call into the Fire Department directly.

 

Mr. Danevich didn’t feel that the Board objected to the intended change of use.  He said that the Board would not approve the change until an updated site plan was filed with the Town.  He also asked that the Fire Chief have the opportunity to review the updated site plan.  There was a brief discussion regarding the requirements for site plans.  Mr. Danevich suggested that Mr. Hammar discuss the requirement for a site plan.  Mr. Mitchell assumed that at some point in the past, a site plan had been submitted to the Town. 

 

Mr. Hammar asked if the Board could vote so that a couple businesses could be added without engineering the whole site.  Mr. Danevich asked Mr. Lynde if he supported the request for a site plan.  Mr. Lynde said that he knew the area and business and believed that the change would be approvable.  He supported the request for the site plan because it was a Planning Board requirement. 

 

Mr. Danevich said that the plan would be date specified to July 1, 2002.  He said that the Board requested an updated site plan and also written comment from the Fire Chief that he had reviewed.  There was a brief discussion for what the site plan should include.  Mr. Lynde said that whatever business came in would fall within the guidelines and not exceed parking needs identified on the lot. 

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

Map 5 Lot 104, 113, 115 - Sousa Realty & Development - Lawrence Corner Road - Proposed 20-Lot Subdivision for continued Consideration

 

Ms. Bousa informed that Mr. Sousa owned a piece of property in another town that her firm was currently working on.  She said that she was not directly engaged by Mr. Sousa, but was engaged by the retailer.  She said if either the Board or the applicant would like her to step down, she would.  Ms. Bousa felt that she could be unbiased.  There was no objection to Ms. Bousa remaining on the Board. 

 

Mr. Danevich said that there had been a couple updates since the last meeting.  He said the question came back and stemmed from whether Lawrence Corner Road was subject to gates and bars and being closed.  He said the short answer was that it was no longer closed to gates and bars and was repealed in 1988.  Mr. Danevich read a portion of a letter submitted by Attorney Diane Gorrow, Town Attorney which reviewed Attorney J. Bradford Westgate’s research, which included the 1988 Warrant at the Town Meeting vote.  Also attached was a copy of the February 1, 1988 Planning Board hearing minutes, which considered whether to consider the 1988 Warrant Article, as well as a copy of the 1972 Town Meeting Warrant.  Attorney Gorrow’s memo noted that the developer owned all the land upon which they proposed to build Lawrence Corner Road.  Based upon the fact that Lawrence Corner Road was discontinued on parcel 5-113, the new road could be constructed through normal Planning Board process.  Later acceptance of the road could be either through Town Meeting, or by the Selectmen under RSA 674:40a, if the authority had been granted to the Selectmen through Town Meeting.  Mr. Danevich said Attorney Gorrow’s letter had been provided to the Board members as well as the applicant.  He said the Board would accept as not being closed to gates and bars.

 

Mr. Tony Basso, Haynor/Swanson presented the plan to the Board.  He began by reviewing the plan.  He said they were proposing twenty new lots with a loop road system.  He said there would by two wetland impacts.  He said the plans had been reviewed by CLD (Town Engineer) and that CLD had done a traffic study.

 

Mr. Basso reviewed the issues that the Board discussed at the previous meeting.  He said the status of Lawrence Corner Road had been taken care of.  He said that a right-of-way to the Lynch parcel had been added to the plan.  Mr. Basso said CLD had brought up a concern of site distance at the intersection of Mammoth Road and Castle Hill Road and the Board had asked what it would take to achieve the NHDOT 400’ requirement.  He said that his field crew surveyed the route and laid out a profile to see where the site distance problem was, and in doing so, he found that he had the 400’ site distance.  He then contacted Mr. Tom Sommers, CLD, to review, who agreed with the findings and submitted a memo.  He said that CLD wanted to see the 500’ ISD (intersection site distance) from AASHTO, which Mr. Sousa had offered a contribution toward a project of $1000 per lot, if the Town wanted to someday pursue and 80/20 split with the state. 

 

Mr. Basso went on to review the Board’s concerns.  He said if the Board desired, Mr. Sousa would provide a 100’ no-cut buffer to the industrial park on lot 5-104-4.  He said that the distance from the loop to Lawrence Corner Road and Castle Hill Road was approximately 1500’.  He said that for a future connection/access, an easement had been provided over the Old Lawrence Corner Road. 

 

Mr. Basso noted that there was a pile of construction debris on an abutting parcel that went onto Mr. Sousa’s land.  He said that a certified letter had been sent requesting that the pile be removed.  The abutter responded by saying they didn’t know where their property line was.  Mr. Basso said that the property line had been staked several months ago, but the abutter had taken no action.  Mr. Danevich asked how far up the pile the stakes went.  Mr. Basso said he didn’t see the stakes in the field, but believed they were approximately 10-’-15’ up the pile.   

 

Mr. Basso said that Lawrence Corner Road was approximately 16’ wide and had discussed in the past to widened it to 20’ with 2’ wide shoulders just up to the point of the project, where it would become a Town standard road.  He said that CLD supported the amount of widening, which was also AASHTO supportable widening.

 

Mr. Basso said that he had asked, but had not received any direction from the Board regarding the intersection of Lawrence Corner Road and Castle Hill Road, which was approximately 65 degrees.  He said the Town required between 60 - 90 degrees.  He said they were asked to consider altering the angle to be closer to 90 degrees.  He said if the Board wanted some pavement could be removed on the easterly side of Lawrence Corner Road to create a more defined, closer to 90-degree intersection. 

 

Mr. Tom Sommers, CLD said he had been to the site several times, reviewing the site distance, which was originally measured at 3.5’ elevation (eye to object height a criteria recommended by AASHTO).  He said the state criteria was 3.75’, which would enable the applicant to meet the 400’ site distance (with minor clearing of vegetation).  Mr. Sommers recognized that the applicant met the 400’ site distance, but preferred that the site distance be 500’ per AASHTO.  Mr. Scanzani noted that in Mr. Sommers' memo there needed to be a 6” clearance above the ground (with the 3.75’ eye/object and 400’ site distance) for the intersection.  Mr. Sommers said that 6”-10”was for a normal car.  Mr. Scanzani was concerned with safety during adverse weather.  He felt that 500’ made more sense.  Mr. Sommers agreed with Mr. Scanzani’s concern, and reiterated that the state requirement was 400’.  Mr. Lynde discussed the actual speed traffic traveled in the area.  Mr. Sommers said that per AASHTO, if the posted speed limit was 40mph, a speed limit of 45mph would be used to make the determination for the site distance, which was 500’.  Mr. Culbert noted that the Board always followed AASHTO and would be making an exception if it weren’t followed in this case. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked for further clarification of the gap time, which he felt, would strengthen the argument that the site distance was not sufficient.  Mr. Sommers said that the time gaps fit with what the distance was found to be.  He said that AASHTO recommended 7.1 seconds as the critical gap to successfully take a left turn.  He said that when he measured the gap was consistently 5-6 seconds. 

 

Mr. Scanzani asked if the width at the corner of Lawrence Corner Road at the intersection of Mammoth Road was okay.  Mr. Sommers felt the width was fine.  He said CLD recommended cutting it down some to have a defined roadway of Lawrence Corner Road entering into Castle Hill Road. 

 

Ms. Bousa felt that the Board needed to decide what speed should be reviewed (design, posted or actual) to determine the correct site distance.  She wanted to know what the cost of the roadway project would be.  Mr. Basso said that the project was estimated to be 500’ long and would cost approximately $250 per foot (a total of $125,000).  He said that they would contribute $1000 per lot and the 20% split from the 80/20 split would actually be $25,000. 

 

Mr. Danevich noted that Mr. Sommers recognized that the 400’ site distance was met, but that he recommended 500’.  He also wanted to recognize the voluntary contribution for off-site exaction. 

 

Mr. Danevich moved the discussion to the Old Lawrence Corner Road and Castle Hill Road intersection.  Mr. Sommers did not have a problem with the concept for straightening the road out and concurred with the design. 

 

Mr. Danevich went on to discuss the road width of 20’ widening to 26’ within the proposed subdivision.  Mr. Sommers said the width had been discussed in the field.  He referred to AASHTO, which says that a 20’ wide road with 2’ shoulders was adequate for the less than 400 vehicular trips.  He said that there were wider areas proposed to enable larger vehicles to pass.  Mr. Brouillet asked if the full build-out from the access point had been considered as well as the build-out access to the Lynch property.  Mr. Sommers said that the Lynch property had a right-or-way along an entire road as well as Castle Hill Road, therefore providing more than one connection.  He said they represented approximately 200 trips, which was within AASHTO.  Mr. Sommers summarized to say that CLD did not have a problem decreasing the road width from 26’ to 20’.  Mr. Danevich said there was no precedent and was concerned with creating a ‘bottleneck’ design.  Mr. Culbert believed that reducing the road would create a safety hazard.  Mr. Brouillet felt that consideration to be given to bicycles and pedestrians who would have a limited ability to share the road.  Mr. Scanzani said that the trip counts may be currently met, but the build-out had not been reviewed and felt that if more homes were added the standards may be exceeded.  Mr. Sommers said that he reviewed the vacant land up the hill and said that 25’-30’ cuts would have to be made, not taking into consideration what would need to be done on the other property to make the connection.  He made the assumption that there would be a traffic limitation on the road.  Mr. Scanzani asked what would happen if the Lynch property were developed.  Mr. Sommers said that there was a multitude of access ways.  Mr. Scanzani said that there would be access to the proposed subdivision, which may exceed the trip counts.  Mr. Sommers said theoretically the trip count could be exceeded if there were more than twenty lots on the Lynch parcel.  Mr. Scanzani said that he did not recall a subdivision with a similar road width without making the entire adjustments to the road mandatory for safety purposes. 

 

Mr. DeLuca asked if the trees and walls were substantial.  Mr. Basso said that there were some substantial trees.  Mr. Danevich believed there was also a historic farm with a wall alongside the road.  Mr. Scanzani felt that the climate should be considered.  He said that snow would also further limit the road.  Mr. Danevich said that within the past four years there had only been two instances that the Board reduced the paved width from 26’ to 24’ within the 500’ category.  He said the reasons for the two reductions were: 1) to reduce wetland impact and 2) reduce the amount of impervious surface. 

 

Mr. Brouillet believed the Staff (f/k/a Safety Committee) had reviewed the plan and had a big concern over the site distance and need Mr. Sommers' memo.  He said the Staff had issue with the street names and asked that the names differentiate between the circle and the main road.  Mr. Danevich said the plan was accepted under the old subdivision regulations, which didn’t have the street name submission requirement.  Mr. Basso said he would voluntarily provide the road names for acceptance. 

 

Mr. Scanzani said that under the current subdivision regulations, the road width, of the existing road, would not meet the requirements even though the proposed new subdivision road would.  He asked if a waiver request was in order, which he would not be in favor of granting. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked what the road length was from the point of egress, which led the Board to question what date the application was accepted.  Mr. Mitchell informed that the application was accepted September 20, 2001. 

 

Mr. Basso said that the proposed road would be approximately an additional 1000’ to the furthest point.  He said that the road was not a cul-de-sac, but a loop that had two access ways from the beginning of the new road. 

 

Mr. Danevich said a remaining issue was the shared driveway.  Mr. Basso said that the lots would have individual driveways. 

 

Mr. Kim Hazavarian, Principal Engineer with TEPP LLC began by discussing the proposed width of Lawrence Corner Road.  He said that they were proposing a 20’ pavement with 2’ shoulders plus turnouts.  He had the conviction, based upon references and his engineering judgement that the road was adequate.  He reviewed the AASHTO guidelines for very low volume roads, which state that 18’ would work for up to 400 vehicles per day, which the proposed subdivision would have half the volume on a 20’ wide road.  He believed the trip count would remain under the guideline if up to twenty homes were added.  He also believed if there were more than twenty houses and the traffic were split, they would still have under the 400-trip count.  He noted that the AASHTO guidelines for a more general design, recommended a pavement width of 20’ with 5’ shoulders to carry between 400-1500 trips per day.  Mr. Hazavarian said that the project was not precluding the widening of Lawrence Corner Road later on should another developer add trips to the road.  Mr. Hazavarian referred to the subdivision regulations and noted that the cross section would fit the environs.  He said that one of the techniques for traffic calming was to make roads not overly wide to discourage speeding.  He agreed that sharing the road with bicycles and pedestrians was important, and felt that they could share the 20’ road, based on volume.  He said that a ‘bottleneck’ could be dealt with by using tapering. 

 

Mr. Hazavarian moved on to discuss the site distance at Mammoth Road and Castle Hill Road.  He said they had reviewed the accident records of the intersection at the NHDOT and found that over the past ten years (1991-2000) there had been three accidents.  He said there were three ways to review site distance: 1) NHDOT 400’ regardless of speed; 2) stopping site distance (SSD) (according to AASHTO); 3) intersection site distance (ISD) (according to AASHTO).  Mr. Hazavarian said that the Green Book suggests that the SSD should be met for intersection safety, providing that ISD gives extra distance that is an operational enhancement.  He said that the site distance was a pre-existing condition and didn’t feel that the amount of traffic that the project added would not change the character of operations at the intersection.  He informed that the applicant was agreeing to make a contribution far in excess of the percentage contribution of the traffic added to the intersection. 

 

Mr. Hazavarian brought up the angle of Lawrence Corner Road and Castle Hill Road, which the applicant had agreed to improve.  He noted that AASHTO states that 60 -120 degrees is okay.  He said the current angle was 65 degrees. 

 

Mr. Hazavarian concluded his remarks by saying the transportation system would be sufficient with the development.  He said the growth cross-section of Lawrence Corner Road was adequate based on the research of references and engineering judgement.  He said the applicant would participate in increasing the intersection site distance.  He said that the intersection and study area had adequate capacity to provide adequate levels of service through the year 2012. 

 

Mr. Scanzani reviewed Mr. Hazavarian’s report that stated the paved area would be 18’ of pavement with 2’ of solid gravel.  Mr. Hazavarian said that the paved area would be 20’, with 2’ of gravel, plus turnouts.  He said that the design was finalized after the report was written.  Ms. Bousa asked if the 2’ could be paved.  Mr. Basso said he would need to review, but said it was possible. 

 

Mr. Lynde asked if snow removal had been taken into consideration.  Mr. Hazavarian said that the AASHTO guidelines were based on research from the whole country and assumed that snow plowing was considered.  Mr. Lynde noted that there may have been only three accidents at the Castle Hill Road intersection, but the traffic would be doubled at the intersection with the proposed subdivision. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked for clarification of the term operational enhancement.  Mr. Hazavarian said that the term operational enhancement in the Green Book meant that if SSD was the only thing provided, then cars travelling along a main street would have to adjust their speed for when cars pulled out from a side street.  He said that SSD applied to intersections and that ISD provided additional site distance at intersections.  Mr. Culbert asked if the applicant had 500’ site distance.  Mr. Hazavarian said that the 500’ was ISD, not SSD.  He said that the plan did not have the 500’ ISD per AASHTO, but did have the AASHTO SSD. 

 

Mr. DeLuca wanted to know if the road were 24’ if it would go up against the stone wall and trees.  Mr. Basso said there would be some tight spots that would require some cutting and would not provide much room for a shoulder beyond it. 

 

Ms. Bousa felt more comfortable if the 24’ cross-section were paved for emergency vehicles and pedestrian safety.  Mr. Brouillet’s concern with paving the shoulder was that shoulders often serve as a function to get water out of a road and felt that the integrity of the construction of the road may by compromised.  Mr. Sommers said that the only way around it would be to add catch basins, which would then require curbing.  Mr. Brouillet asked if profiling cross-sections were provided for the section of road.  Mr. Basso said that a profile and an enlightenment were provided to CLD.  Mr. Brouillet asked if there was a cut, fill or balanced.  Mr. Basso said it was close, they were trying to stay with what was out there.  Mr. Sommers said there was no major change in grade. 

 

Mr. DeLuca asked if the paving for the project was 24’ so that there would not be a need for tapering.  Mr. Lynde suggested 20’ for the entire length of the loop. 

 

Mr. Hazavarian wanted to clarify any confusion regarding SSD and ISD.  He said that SSD was normally used for their standard intersection analysis.  He said that the ISD went one step beyond. 

 

Attorney J. Bradford Westgate of Winer & Bennett, LLP, representing Sousa Realty & Development said he had written a letter to the Board dated May 9, 2002 and went on to review some of the points stated.  He said the first item was the concept of proportionality test, which was connecting what off-site improvements may be required for subdivision approval with what a developer was obligated to do.  He said the basic concept was that a developer was only obligated to bear his proportional share of off-site improvements or bear those, which are rationally connected by way of the proportional share.  He said the proportionality test had relevance in two issues, the first being the pavement width and design of the existing Lawrence Corner Road.  He said that the traffic volume generated from the project (approximately 200 cars per day) would be adequately handled under the AASHTO standards of an 18’ pavement width, and therefore would be handled with the proposed 20’ pavement width.  He believed that the 20’ pavement width was more than an adequate fix for what traffic the project would generate.  He ended by saying that was the proportionality or rational connection to what they were imposing versus the impact on the road. 

 

Attorney Westgate said a similar thought pertained to the Mammoth Road intersection that the 400’ site distance was adequate, even though Mr. Sommers preferred the ISD calculation of 500’.  He believed the intersection met typical design standards, however they were willing to offer up to $20,000 ($1000 per lot) for a Town project which improves the intersection site distance of the north to the 500’ distance under the preferred ISD standard.  He believed, from a legal point of view, that no improvements should be imposed on the project, since what they were doing didn’t rationally connect to the need for improvement since the site distance was already there.  Attorney Westgate noted that the traffic trips into the intersection were a bit under the 20% contribution that would be made.  In general, he felt that the improvement suggested and the contribution proposed more than met the proportionality test that they were required to undertake. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Attorney Jim Tamposi, representing members of the Lynch family discussed the proposed subdivision with the Board.  He said the Lynch farm (a/k/a Mary farm) was at the corner of Lawrence Corner Road and Castle Hill Road.  He said there were no problems widening the road and wished the Board would make it a requirement.  He said at the last meeting, and currently still, his clients felt the project to be a scattered and premature.  He said the applicant offered to put $1000 per lot in a fund toward road improvements on Mammoth Road, which didn’t mean it would be done today, but would be done when the state came through with the remaining 80% of the money.  Attorney Tamposi discussed the traffic flow and said that the intersection was dangerous.  He didn’t feel the Board should set a precedent on Mammoth Road.  He believed that three accidents were a lot for the intersection since there wasn’t much traffic coming out of the intersection.  Attorney Tamposi discussed the 400’ site distance, which was a standard set and was not specific to the actual intersection.  He said the site should be reviewed as it stood, taking into consideration inclement weather and the actual speed that traffic flowed.  Attorney Tamposi discussed the widening of Lawrence Corner Road and said that the drainage for the road had not been addressed.  He said under the law, a subdivision was scattered and premature if the health, safety and general welfare of the Town could not be met.  He said there were approximately thirty catch basins within the subdivision, which indicated there was a lot of water on the parcel.  He questioned where the water would eventually go. 

 

Mr. Jay Lynch, 20 Roosevelt Avenue of Hudson, discussed the proposed right-of-way.  He asked if the right-of-way could be moved over to go through the old bar way, due to the topography of the land. 

 

Mr. David Lynch said that the site line on Lawrence Corner Road, near the existing home, had not been discussed.  He didn’t feel the current width was adequate, since it was tight for two cars to pass. 

 

Attorney Bill Mason, representing members of the Lynch family, reviewed the plans.  He said that Lawrence Corner Road, on the tax maps went into two parcels (lots 5-113 and 5-104).  He said that for purposes of the subdivision lots 5-113 and 5-104 were being combined and made 5-104.  He said it seemed like the centerline of the road appeared to be bisected by the tax map line of 5-113 and 5-104.  He discussed the subdivision plan with regard to lot 5-114, and said it appeared that Lawrence Corner Road traveled through a portion of lot 5-104.  He said he reviewed the Warrant Article, and it did not reference lot 5-104 and believed the Board may need clarification of where Lawrence Corner Road traveled through.  He didn’t feel that the action of the Town in 1988 served to discontinue the portion of Lawrence Corner Road that traveled through lot 5-104.  Attorney Mason felt the Board should take a proactive approach with regard to road width and drainage since there would be further development in the area.  He discussed the road width issue and believed that due to weather and pedestrian safety a 24’ paved area may be a more appropriate width.  He also noted that the Board may need to review the drainage and curbing. 

 

Mr. Danevich noted that the letter from Town Counsel addressed lot 5-104, and suggested that if the plan were approved and Lawrence Corner Road was developed and accepted by the Town, the Town may want to consider discontinuing the old corner of the road as it exists on lot 5-114.  The letter went on to suggested that the only other discontinuance issue that might require a Town meeting vote would be if Lawrence Corner Road existed on any part of lot 5-104, which would create a cloud on the title for the lots carved out from lot 5-104.  Attorney Westgate said the question of lot 5-104 had been researched, and didn’t feel that the entirety of a road would be discontinued leaving a small gap in the center.  He said leaving the gap would not be the intention of the discontinuity act.  He said when the history of the deeds was investigated, the road did bisect the lots along where Attorney Mason pointed out.  He said that he had Mr. Basso’s firm, Haynor/Swanson investigate the question and the Chief Surveyor, Mr. Gary Collins prepared a memo that outlined the history and showed that the road did bisect lots 5-101 and 5-113.  He said the road traveled fully along lot 5-113 and was therefore was fully discontinued because the Warrant Article discontinued the entirety of Lawrence Corner Road along 5-113.  Attorney Westgate maintained his belief that there was not an issue, but said if there was, it would be a title issue for the developer and not a regulatory issue. 

 

Mr. Culbert asked what the status would be if the portion of the road was not discontinued.  Attorney Westgate said the road would arguably be still subject to the public servitude.  He went on to reference his memo of May 9, 2002 which addressed the ‘scattered and premature’ issue raised by Attorney Tamposi.  He said that the notion of a scattered and premature subdivision is one that sufficient town services aren’t in the area to accommodate the subdivision, which was not the case in this instance.  He said the proposed subdivision was close to a major thoroughfare and would be serviced by on site septic systems and wells.  He said with the proposed improvements, there was adequate road system into the project.  Attorney Westgate said that they would take care of their proportionate share, and more so, of the necessary impacts that the project imposed.  He said the proposed plan deserved conditions of approval that adequately addressed the Lawrence Corner Road issue as well as the preferred site distance issue on Mammoth Road through and overall Town project.

 

Mr. Lynde didn’t feel that the right-of -way onto the Lynch property should head toward an area that would need wetland crossings.  He also noted that there was no open space provisions or recreation space.  It was his understanding that the words cul-de-sac and dead-end were used interchangeably.  He said that the cul-de-sac issue should be addressed.  He said the furthest point should be calculated. 

 

Mr. Culbert referenced the Mammoth Road and Castle Hill Road intersection and said he didn’t feel comfortable with the site distance being less than 500’.  His said another concern was the narrowing of the road and even though tapering was mentioned, it was not indicated on the plan.  He questioned the right-of-way because the plan didn’t show where it went.  He said that the Board normally required that right-of-ways lead to developable land.  Mr. Culbert ended by saying he shared Mr. Lynde’s concern regarding the length of the road. 

 

Mr. McNamara felt that both attorneys had made a good case for and against the premature development issue.  He referenced the Zukis v. Town of Fitzwilliam case, which said in part, ‘at the point where such a hazard is created, further development becomes premature’.  Mr. McNamara said if the Board accepted the premise that there was a hazardous situation with the site distance on Mammoth Road, which CLD’s memo and testimony suggested that was the case, and the Board considered that the be the hazard within Zukis, the development would be premature.  He said he appreciated the applicant’s offer to donate some money per parcel to mitigate the problem, but didn’t feel that concern applied to premature development.  He said the current condition seemed to be hazardous, and by approving the proposed, more traffic would be added, and a further potential for accidents would be created.  He said that everyone knew how fast people drove in the area, therefore making the area not particularly safe.  Mr. McNamara felt it was a little self-serving of Mr. Tamposi’s client for discussing the improvements and requesting the right-of-way.  He said when the project and improvements were complete, Mr. Tamposi’s client’s parcel would then become developable without them having input to the development.  Mr. McNamara said he would have a hard time approving the plan without having some kind of plan in place that would mitigate the site distance problem.  He said if the Board went with the premise that the project was premature and there was a hazardous condition, the development would remain premature unless the hazardous conditions were alleviated.  He felt that the funneling of the road from 26’ to 20’, in conjunction with the site distance created a bit of a hazard.

 

Mr. Scanzani said that historically the Board reviewed roads for their safety as well as how they would be for the Town, long term.  He said the Board had actual history of the speeds on Mammoth Road, and to require a safe site distance would be in the purview of the Board.  He said that he would not vote for a road that had 20’ of pavement that continued and created a funnel.  He felt that snow removal, pedestrian safety and drainage should be taken into consideration.  He could not recall a waiver precedent for a road narrowing to the degree proposed.  Mr. Scanzani didn’t feel that the applicant adequately addressed the road drainage.  He said that part of the reason the road had been closed to gates and bars was due to the road condition.  He said that the Town now had a good set of plans for why the length of road was being reviewed for cul-de-sacs.  Mr. Scanzani said that the Board had to review long-term public safety.  He understood the premature development situation and believed that it had to do with the actual conditions, not the location.  He felt the premature condition could be eliminated if the road were brought up to the proper specs.  He said he would not be able to approve the plan as it currently was. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/McNamara) To deny the plan for the following specific reasons: 1) safety issue at the Mammoth Road intersection on the belief that the 400’ was not adequate and would cause a hazardous situation to put more traffic into that intersection; 2) going from a 26’ to a 20’ wide road created an additional hazard; 3) a problem with the right-of-way going to the Lynch property because it is unclear if it goes anywhere that could be extended; 4) there was no waiver for the length of the road; 5) reviewing from a safety standpoint, the knowledge of the site; 6) road drainage for Old Lawrence Corner Road has not been adequately addressed, when the road has been widened to the 20’ the road drainage issues have not been properly addressed; 7) premature development based on a road hazard existing in the area (not the fact that the Town could not provide services to the area).

 

VOTE:

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.  

 

Mr. Danevich said a memo would be drafted informing of the denial. 

 

Administrative Break.......

 

Mr. Danevich reviewed the agenda and date specified the following plans to the July 1, 2002 meeting:

 

Map 12 Lot 44 - Hart, Jordan & White - Shephard Road/Mulberry Lane - Proposed 28 Lot Subdivision

Map 9 Lot 9-2 - East View Corporation - Off Simpson Mill Road - Proposed 9-Lot Subdivision

 

Map 3 Lot 88-2 & 89 - M&P Realty Trust - Priscilla Way and Nashua Road - Proposed 6-Lot Subdivision for continued Consideration

 

Mr. Peter Zohdi, Herbert Associates presented the plan to the Board.  He said that the Board had previously reviewed the subdivision and they were now seeking final approval.  He reviewed the changes made to the plan and said that there was an existing lot of record now shown, the road configuration was changed to add some land to one of the lots, and that the sixth lot would be deeded to theTown if the Town wanted it.  He said that all the lots were checked by Mr. Brouillet and Mr. Tom Sommers of CLD, and believed that all the lots were satisfactory.

 

Mr. Danevich said that the Staff (f/k/a Safety Committee) had submitted a memo requesting the feasibility of connecting the road through to Nashua Road.  He said that he met with both the Fire Chief and the Police Chief and was able to explain the reasons why the connection would not be possible and at that point received verbal concurrence acknowledgement why the connection could not be done.  He said the reasons the road could not be connected were as follows: 1) site distance reduced to 300’; 2) grade consideration coming down to Nashua Road; 3) wetland impact and the amount of displacement of the WCD.  He said that the Fire Chief came in at the last meeting and was amiable, from a fire perspective to the extension of the cul-de-sac. 

 

Ms. Ouellette and Mr. Lynde asked if there was a frontage issue.  Mr. Zohdi said the frontage issue was resolved at the last meeting by Mr. Mitchell, who informed that the new regulations said the narrowest portion of the lot would have to be 75’.  He said that the new plan showed 75’ of frontage onto Priscilla Road.  He said at the last meeting there had been a question of driveway placement, and the logical placement for the driveway on lot 23 would come from Priscilla Way.  He said if the Board felt the driveway should be located on the portion of the lot with 200’ frontage, his client would like to reserve the right to go before the Board of Adjustment and request a Variance.  Mr. Zohdi pointed out that the Board had never interpreted the zoning in such a way.  He said that placing the driveway on the 200’ portion of the parcel would require a wetland crossing, but placing the driveway from Priscilla Way would not. 

 

Mr. Lynde said that he understood what Mr. Zohdi was saying, but believed the Zoning Ordinance was clear when it defined frontage as the length of the lot bordering on the public right-of-way and served as the access to the lot and the requirement was 200’.  Mr. Danevich said he had discussed the issue with past Board members who believed the spirit and intent frontage was that the lot had 200’ frontage someplace on a class five road.  He said that the Board should be consistent.  Mr. Scanzani said that historically the Board had interpreted the ordinance as stated by Mr. Danevich and had always addressed and determined the placement of driveways.  Mr. Zohdi didn’t feel that zoning stated that access had to be from 200’. 

 

Mr. McNamara read a portion of Zoning Ordinance 307:14, which addressed the issue of frontage.  Mr. Lynde asked that Zoning Ordinance 307:6, 8 that defined frontage.  Mr. McNamara felt that past practice contradicted the wording in the Zoning Ordinance. 

 

Mr. Brouillet understood that if the Board recommend that the driveway continue the driveway from Priscilla Way, the developer would need to go before the Board of Adjustment and seek a Variance.  Mr. Zohdi said that if he could not get approval to place the driveway from Priscilla Way, he would place the driveway from Nashua Road, but would reserve the right to seek a Variance from the Board of Adjustment. 

 

Mr. Danevich believed that the prevailing issues were the Board’s history, common sense piece, the dramatic fire and safety concern, the wetlands impact and overall accessibility.  There was a brief discussion regarding the past practice of the Board for pieces that had been approved with similar instances.  Mr. McNamara felt there had been a misinterpretation of zoning.  Mr. Zohdi believed that the Board could approve the plan with the driveway coming from Nashua Road, but also support his case to the Board of Adjustment to have the driveway from Priscilla Way.  The Board went on to discuss the spirit and intent of the Zoning. 

 

PUBLIC INPUT

 

Mr. Philip Currier, said there had been a twenty-year history and explained that the term Administrative Gloss, used in the law, that a Board may put as it interprets its ordinance, and if it goes on long enough, that would in effect become the way the ordinance was interpreted by the Board.  He wanted to be clear that the Board was changing the Administrative Gloss of at least twenty years that applied to the ordinance.  He wanted felt the change was unwise and wanted to make clear that the change would apply to everyone in the future. 

 

Mr. Lynde said that after review of the ordinance, he had to interpret what he read.  Mr. Currier said the interpretation had been consistent for twenty years.  He urged the Board to stay with the interpretation and approve the plan.  Mr. McNamara discussed the wording of the Zoning Ordinance, which stated ‘and’, not ‘or’.  He said the Board was interpreting it contrary to that.  Mr. Currier said the prior argument made for years by the Board was that the word ‘access’ was used, and the ordinance did not say that the driveway had to be on the 200’ portion of a lot.  He said the ordinance could have been changes, but wasn’t because the Board was satisfied with the Administrative Gloss, which no one had ever appealed.  Mr. Scanzani said if the Fire Department had to put out a fire, it would have access from two roads, not driveway access, but just access.  He then made a motion to approve the plan, as is, as the Board had done in the past with other plans, with 200’ frontage onto a Town owned road and place driveways wherever they make sense.  Mr. Culbert seconded the motion based on the Board’s past interpretation.  Mr. Danevich noted that the cul-de-sac waiver needed to be voted on first. 

 

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Culbert) To approve the waiver of the cul-de-sac length as it is, under the new regulations. 

 

VOTE:

(6 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.   Mr. Lynde abstained because he disagreed with the 2400’.

 

MOTION:

(Scanzani/Culbert) To approve the plan as is. 

 

VOTE:

(4 - 3 - 0) The motion carries.   Mr. McNamara, Mr. Lynde and Ms. Ouellette voted no.

 

Mr. Danevich said he voted yes for the following reasons: 1) last segment and finishing four separate subdivision; 2) interpretation always has been the 200’, which had been consistently applied as long as he had been on the Board and before and could site at least 20-30 parcels where the exact situation had occurred.  He felt the spirit and intent of the Zoning Ordinance was to have any portion of the lot with a contiguous 200’ frontage on any Town road. 

 

Administrative Break....

 

Mr. Danevich asked if the Board would reconsider holding a meeting June 17, 2002 to hear the Stonepost Village LLC case.  There was a discussion and the Board was amiable holding a meeting on June 17, 2002. 

 

The following case was date specified to June 17, 2002:

 

Map 12 Lot 41-43 - Stonepost Village LLC - Spring Street - Proposed 12-Lot Subdivision for continued Consideration

 

Map 4 Lot 139 - Normandy R.E. Holding Co. LLC - Valley Hill Road - Proposed 25-Lot Subdivision for continued Consideration

 

Mr. Peter Zohdi, Herbert Associates presented the plan to the Board.  He said that they were proposing a 25-lot subdivision and an extension of Longview Road.  He said the plan had been before the Board a few times and it had been decided to not connect through to Valley Hill Road.  Mr. Zohdi said he met with Mr. Mitchell, Mr. Brouillet and Mr. Tom Sommers of CLD, and done everything he had been asked to.  He believed that the plan was now ready for final approval.  He said they were pushing the approval because the abutting apple orchard development needed the water line extension, which had to go through the proposed subdivision since the apple orchard lots had been waived from having individual wells.  Mr. Zohdi believed that all issues were resolved on the plan.  He said that he did not have a dredge and fill permit and needed the Board to make a decision before Conservation would act on the permit. 

 

Mr. Danevich reviewed his list of concerns.  He noted the need to change the 10’ walking path to a 50’ easement for access to state land and that the plan should clearly articulate the public access - Mr. Zohdi said he would change the plan to note a 50’ right-of-way easement (without using the words walking) - The Board was in concurrence that the plan should be changed to have the 50’ easement;

 

Mr. Tom Sommers, CLD said that almost everything had been done.  He noted the following remaining issues: 1) bicycle safety/pedestrian access should be added per the regulations; 2) requirement for a 15,000SF buildable area be shown - Mr. Zohdi had agreed, at his meeting with Mr. Sommers to add the information to the topo plan; 3) also during his meeting with Mr. Sommers, Mr. Zohdi had agreed to change the intersection of Collins Way to a 3% grade - Mr. Sommers felt the grade change should be an approval stipulation; 4) a stipulation of signing the plan that the water line system be shown on the plan.  Mr. Brouillet asked if there were slope issues that would require some additional engineering.  Mr. Sommers said at his meeting with Mr. Zohdi, it had been agreed that there were two headwalls that should have the structural designs complete before the plan was signed.  He said he was not opposed to the two K-factor waivers for vertical curves requested.  He felt the waivers fit within AASHTO guidelines.  Mr. Sommers was in basic support of the plan.  Mr. Danevich said there should also be a stipulation that the Fire Chief has the opportunity to permanently locate fire hydrant placement.  Mr. Zohdi said he had added a note (#11) to the front page of the plan. 

 

Mr. McNamara asked how Rome Avenue connected within the plan.  Mr. Zohdi discussed the connection with him.  Mr. McNamara wanted to know how the construction vehicles would access the parcel.  Mr. Zohdi said Conservation had approved the dredge and fill permit from Meadowview and believed a majority would be from that point. 

 

Mr. Lynde wanted to now if the environmental impacts had been addressed.  Mr. Danevich said that it had been addressed three separate times throughout the process of all three phases. 

 

Ms. Bousa noted that there was not frontage noted on sheet 4 lot 31.  Mr. Zohdi said he would add it. 

 

Mr. Danevich reviewed the outstanding issues as follows: 1) lot frontage to be added to lot 31; 2) water plan design.  Mr. Mitchell believed the Board should review lot 4-139-8 based on the recent interpretation of frontage and if the applicant could use Valley Hill Road.  Mr. Zohdi said he was not proposing to use Valley Hill Road, but would instead be using Longview for the frontage.  He also asked the Board to examine the shape of lot 4-139-23.  Mr. Zohdi showed on the plan how the lot line could be change, if the Board wanted.  He said he would work with Mr. Brouillet to adjust the lot line.  Mr. Danevich reviewed the remaining issues.  Mr. Mitchell noted that Valley Hill was fairly steep and believed that there should possibly be a no disturbance area.  Mr. Zohdi said he could add a 75’ no-cut or disturbance zone.  He said the 75’ could join the lots being deeded to the Town.  Mr. Lynde asked if the land could be deeded to the Town.  Mr. Zohdi said that instead of having the 75’ no-cut area, he would instead deed 50’ along the property line up to the lots already being deeded to the Town. 

 

Mr. Danevich noted that the remaining issues were: 1) lot-line adjustment for lots 4-139-22 & 23; 2) adding a frontage note for lot 31; 3) adding the water plan design or Pennichuck; 4) Fire Chief comment with regard to placement of hydrants; 5) K-factor waivers; 6) two structure headwall plans; 7) 50’ deed to the Town. 

 

Mr. Yarmo discussed the proximity of the subdivision to the state park.  He wanted to ensure the open space area was being utilized.  Mr. Mitchell said that the plan provided for the connectivity. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/Scanzani) To approve the plan with the following stipulations: 1) lot-line adjustment for lots 4-139-22 & 23; 2) adding a frontage note for lot 31; 3) adding the water plan design for Pennichuck; 4) Fire Chief comment with regard to placement of hydrants; 5) completing designs for K-factor waivers; 6) two structure headwall plans; 7) 50’ deed to the Town for the back parcels. 

 

VOTE:

(6 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.  Mr. McNamara abstained

 

ADMINISTRATIVE

 

Discussion of engaging NRPC to assist the Town of Pelham with a Hazard Migration Plan

 

Mr. Danevich said a formal vote was needed to engage NRPC to assist the Town with the Hazard Migration Plan.  He said there was no cost to the Town and if they required a subcommittee they would meet with the Board to request further discussion. 

 

MOTION:

(Lynde/Culbert) To engage NRPC to assist the Town of Pelham with a Hazard Migration Plan.

 

VOTE:

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries.

 

MAHLEP Housing Limited Partnership discussion regarding request for Impact Fee waiver for Pelham Terrace

 

Mr. Danevich said that there were two impact fee waiver requests received from Pelham Terrace for the expansion of the building.  He said one request was for the school and one request was for fire.  Based on the amount of calls that go to Pelham Terrace he would not support the waiver request for fire.  Mr. Danevich noted with regard to Elderly Housing there was a deed restriction on the property which made the school request different than if a resident were requesting the waiver. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/McNamara) To waive the impact fee for the school based on the deed restrictions for Elderly Housing

 

VOTE:

(6 - 0 - 1) The motion carries.  Mr. DeLuca voted no. 

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/McNamara) To deny the request to waive the fire impact fee for Pelham Terrace.

 

VOTE:

(7 - 0 - 0) The motion carries. 

 

Mr. Danevich reiterated that the waiver request for the fire impact fee was denied. 

 

MINUTES REVIEW

 

May 20, 2002

 

MOTION:

(Culbert/DeLuca) To accept the minutes of the May 20, 2002 Board meeting as amended.

 

VOTE:

(6 - 0 - 1)  The motion carries.  Mr. Scanzani abstained.  

 

DATE SPECIFICATION

 

The following case was date specified to the June 17, 2002 meeting:

 

Map 12 Lot 41-43 - Stonepost Village LLC - Spring Street - Proposed 12-Lot Subdivision for continued Consideration

 

The following cases were date specified to the July 1, 2002 meeting:

 

Map 3 Lot 166-23 - Cady, Alan - Overlook Drive - Proposed 2-Lot Subdivision

Map 12 Lot 44 - Hart, Jordan & White - Shephard Road/Mulberry Lane - Proposed 28 Lot Subdivision

Map 9 Lot 9-2 - East View Corporation - Off Simpson Mill Road - Proposed 9-Lot Subdivision

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

 A motion was made and seconded to adjourn the meeting.

 

The motion was adjourned at approximately 11:15 pm.

 

                                                                                                Respectfully submitted,

 

                                                                                                Charity A. L. Willis

                                                                                                Recording Secretary